Istanbul rises from the Bosphorus, a vision of minarets and domes sparkling in the light. The capital of vanished empires, Istanbul is a true crossroad, the only city on Earth to span two continents. This meeting place of Europe and Asia, of Christian and Muslim, is one of the great adventures a traveler encounters. Browse the stalls of the world's largest bazaar, explore ancient mosques and churches, and gaze at the stunning jewels in the Topkapi Palace.
Istanbul has dominated the Straits of Bosporus for 25 centuries. As Constantinople, capital of the Eastern Roman Empire, it was a metropolis of stunning splendor when the great cities of Europe were mere villages.